Bedroom staged by Cathy Hobbs Design Recipes | LivingIn
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How to Prep for Spring Selling Season

March 21, 2019

By Cathy Hobbs, Founder & Creator of Cathy Hobbs Design Recipes

With the winter thaw comes the red hot spring selling season! Typically a critical time for those looking to sell their properties prior to summer, now is when a seller needs to put his or her absolute best foot forward. When it comes to properly prepping a home to be put on the market, many experts argue that successful home staging is the key to a lucrative sale. Staging is often seen as an important marketing tool as it leads to selling a property for the most amount of money in the shortest amount of time. Stumped as to where to begin to get your home sale-ready?  Here are seven expert tips to help you get started with staging…

1. Purge!

The first thing to tackle when you’re preparing a property for sale relates to how much stuff you have. You’ll want to start by removing the excess items in every room. From extra furniture to clothing, now is the time to make your home feel as spacious as possible.

Living room before and after photos | LivingIn
A living room and dining area with disjointed furniture placement becomes sale-ready with staging. (Staging by Cathy Hobbs Design Recipes)

2. Create a basic marketing plan.

A seller will work with his or her real estate agent to outline a plan. The goal of this step is to simply decide who your target buyer is, as this can directly influence the staging process.

3. De-personalize.

When potential buyers walk into a property, it is important for them to feel that it could be their home, filled with their stuff, not yours. Everything from personal photos to religious references should be removed.

Photos of living room before and after staging | LivingIn
A sparse living room creates an unappealing first impression for potential buyers. After staging, the same space is bright and fresh. (Staging by Cathy Hobbs Design Recipes)

4. Neutralize.

Even something as simple as repainting or replacing carpeting can be a deterrent for potential buyers. Taupes and grays are ideal colors to use in creating a neutral, soothing color palette.

5. Hire a professional stager.

When it comes to serious staging, you’ll want to engage the help of a professional. If you aren’t sure where to start, begin by researching local staging companies—some may specialize in a specific style or geographic area. Additionally, the Real Estate Staging Association is a great resource when you’re looking to hire a professional stager or staging company. Concerned about cost? Most professional stagers are able to work within a wide range of budgets.

Photos of living room before and after staging | LivingIn
A room being used as a home office becomes a properly styled and staged living room. (Staging by Cathy Hobbs Design Recipes)

6. Go back to the room’s roots.

No matter what the space has become over time (an extra closet, playroom, etc), it’s important to return a room to its intended use when you’re trying to sell. Potential buyers need to be able to envision themselves using those rooms. For example, a bedroom functioning as a home office must be staged and styled as a bedroom.

7. Create a timeline. 

When you place your property on the market can be critical in capturing the biggest pool of potential buyers. If you’re flexible in terms of when you can list, earlier in the selling season is best.

For more tips to help you make your home picture-perfect either to sell or enjoy yourself, check out my recent article about trends in interior design.

Cathy Hobbs photo and byline| LivingIn
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